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  • I don't have this book yet, but it appears to be a variation with changes of "The Pleasure Principle" released in Britain for the UK audience. We can use this thread to discuss "How To Be An Epicurean" as people begin to get and read this one. I know that Ms. Wilson is making the podcast rounds as well, so it will probably make sense to set up a thread for each of her major interviews, which I will do now with the Philosophy Bites podcast as suggested by SamJ
  • Here is a new (9/26) review of the Catherine Wilson book in the Economist, but it is behind a pay wall and I don't want to subscribe just to see this article. If anyone has access to a copy could they let me know? https://www.economist.com/book…ood-life-is-avoiding-pain
  • And now I see once again how divergent peoples' views of Epicurus can be. The article is negatively loaded from start to finish. I guess one has to ask whether this negative loading comes from the writer, or from Catherine Wilson. My preliminary estimate is that it comes from Catherine Wilson, with some slight embellishment by the article writer.
  • The article says Wilson includes a table comparing Epicurus to Stoicism -- I will look for that and try to post a version here.
  • Ah you have a good memory! Actually I have bought the epub of the new book - I will check right now --- Here is the version from "How to Be An Epicurean" and yes it is exactly the same
  • Great notes thank you! She's very right about that! I hope she tells us explicitly what part of her book is "rethinking" and which is what Epicurus said!
  • OMG another of Elayne's quotes: This is going to go down as one of the most ridiculous statements in the book. As part of our review we ought to come up with a collection of "incorrect" statements, and I have to think this one would be near the top!
  • (Quote from Elayne) I completely agree. I was talking with someone privately yesterday who made a statement to the effect that ETHICS is the most importan, and that epistemology and physics are subsidiary. I said that I think the deemphasis of physics and epistemology is the pattern of "the Cambridge approach" and as a result they end up staying in the "rationalist / platonic / stoic" camp and they force-fit Epicurus into their pre-existing models. But if you thoroughly fix in your mind first i…
  • Let's continue with general comments in this thread, but I have also opened a thread devoted specially to : Responding To Catherine Wilson's Chart Comparing Epicurus To The Stoics I have also set up "Catherine Wilson Books - Careful" as a subforum of its own, so over time people can start their own threads, and we may want to end up devoting a thread to each chapter.
  • Yes Charles it looks like this book may become a regular point of discussion for years to come, like Greenblatt's "The Swerve"
  • Thank you Hiram!!! Lots to comment on but sadly this immediately jumps out at me: Rather than aiming specifically to maximise pleasure, the Epicureans concentrated on minimising pains, the pains that arise from failures of ‘choice and avoidance’. " Argh!!!!!
  • Man!! she cannot resist the politics can she? Argh again!!! (Quote)
  • (Quote) No!!!! The value of philosophy is that it heals the sick and helps us lead happier lives! She just cannot leave the politics alone!
  • I now (in the past, I thought differently) think it is a major mistake to use the "all that really exists..." phrasing as Wilson does in this article. That is the method by which Religionists and Academics fool people into thinking that Epicurus is not worthwhile because their lives are only illusions -- "not really existing." Sure the atoms and void are what have ETERNAL and UNCHANGING existence, but the bodies that are formed from atoms and void during our lifetimes are very real to us, and t…
  • Great comments Todd. Glad to see you are reading this too. You guys are ahead of me!
  • In response to Godfrey's and Hiram's encouragement to me to post more, let me focus on this first: (Quote from Godfrey)And so did Norman DeWitt, in writing what I think is by far the best book on Epicurus in 100 years. Did he break through in the long term into the academic circles, or is he ignored? (Quote from Hiram)And that's part of the same issue. The "mainstream" places of discussion aren't just unaware of the DeWitt / Alternate argument -- they DISAGREE with it -- and if they have their …
  • Charles (and to others reading this thread): I have prepared a blank outline of the book for ease of use in making notes on each section: Outlining Catherin Wilson's "How To Be An Epicurean" - A Blank Form You can just cut and paste that outline into a new post of your own and then add your notes as you go along. Everyone should feel free to make your own thread, preferably in this same sub-form; I would propose titles such as "Charles' Outline of Wilson's How To Be An Epicurean" for each threa…
  • Michael if you do buy and read the book I hope you will consider adding your comments in this subforum as you do. That would be a great help to everyone! I have been trying to read through it systematically but I find it very difficult to keep up my enthusiasm. She flips effortlessly between statements that adhere to the Epicurean texts and those that are clearly her own personal / political preference without any regard for consistency in doing so. There's very little doubt in my mind but that…
  • i suppose I am not as much of a libertarian as you are Hiram. I am interested in people who see the same things that I do and form friendships on that basis. I recognize that everyone will not agree, and the problem is not lack of communication, nor will it be resolvable by communication.